Latest Indigenous stamp honours Métis artist and environmentalist Christi Belcourt

The third stamp in this year’s Canada Post Indigenous Leaders series was unveiled today (June 25) in Ottawa, celebrating Métis visual artist and environmentalist Christi Belcourt.

Known for her intricate paintings that emulate traditional Métis floral beadwork, Belcourt employs her artistry to celebrate nature, honour her ancestors, and advocate for the protection of land and water, while supporting Indigenous knowledge, culture, and language.

This stamp is part of a trio of Indigenous Leaders stamps released on June 21, marking the third instalment in Canada Post’s ongoing Indigenous Leaders series.

Christi Belcourt with her family (CNW Group/Canada Post)

Born in Scarborough, Ont., in 1966 and raised in Ottawa, Belcourt is a descendant of the Métis community of Manitow Sâkahikan (Lac Ste. Anne) in Alberta. She is renowned for her large floral paintings inspired by Métis beadwork, reflecting her heritage and the natural environment. Her works have been exhibited across North America and are part of the permanent collections of major Canadian galleries, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario, and the Gabriel Dumont Institute.

In recognition of residential school survivors and their descendants, Belcourt designed a stained-glass window titled Giniigaaniimenaaning (Looking Ahead), installed in the Centre Block of the Parliament Buildings in Ottawa. Her art, rich in both beauty and message, includes the poignant Walking With Our Sisters, a memorial installation featuring over 2,000 pairs of beaded moccasin tops commemorating the lives of missing or murdered Indigenous women, Two-Spirit people, and children.

As a co-founder of the Onaman Collective, Belcourt dedicates her time to fostering resources and spaces for land-based Indigenous practices, including language revitalization. Her accolades include the Jim Brady Memorial Medal of Excellence (2023), an Artist Award from the Premier’s Awards for Excellence in the Arts (Ontario, 2016), a Governor General’s Innovation Award (2016), and the 2014 Ontario Arts Council Aboriginal Arts Award, among others. She has also been awarded honorary doctorates from Algoma University and Wilfrid Laurier University, both in 2023.

The newly released stamp, cancelled in Ottawa where Belcourt was raised, features an illustration by Belcourt set against a detail from her painting, Reverence for Life. The cancellation image, a line drawing, is inspired by Belcourt’s distinctive painting style.

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